Originally posted on Hooting & Howling


A basement in Bethnal Green posing one of the best new acts from Manchester, and in support one from the polar opposite end of the country in Falmouth, is always a good position to be found in, and when those acts happen to be PINS and The Black Tambourines playing their second night in a run of the former’s new album preview dates – it’s somewhat even better.

Kicking off proceedings to a slowly filling room, The Black Tambourines burst instantly into life with the racous surf punk stylings that have been deservedly rocketing them to the public attention since their debut album release last year. Storming through the scuzzy lo-fi affairs such as ‘Who You Talking To?’ and ’27-25 Blues’ , the quartet showcased the tracks at their best – live and roaring with energy. Even in briefly calmer points of the set the entire band were on full throttle and throwing themselves about the stage, and by the appearance of recent single ‘I Wanna Stay Away’, a bass had met its end. Regardless, the outfit carried on non-plussed and flung through further tracks from their eponymous LP, an anthemic rendition ‘Crosseyed’, and disappeared offstage in short but sweet terms, leaving everyone suitably warmed up and undoubtedly converted to the music of The Black Tambourines.

Soon however, came PINS, taking to the stage bringing more than a hint of sparkle and glam to proceedings as a newly rejuvinated five piece – completed by keys player Kyoko Swan – and crashing straight into their forthcoming new album with all the glitzy freneticism they could muster.

After two sharp polished shocks of new material sounding more furious whilst infectiously pop tinged as the outfit’s past offerings, a brief break saw the band stopping to announce to the sold out and sufficiently crammed room that we were the second group to hear the new record in it’s entirety – something that might’ve seemed a bit of a gamble, unless of course you were PINS – in which case the highlights came thick and fast with little deviation.

The likes of ‘If Only’ and ‘Oh Lord’ brought a faster punkier tone that only proved to be brilliant, complete with signature vocal howls and a vast injection of carefree nature as the band danced around, rightly self assured and enjoying it all as much as the crowd. A brief gap in the madness also offered up a more brooding burner in the form of ‘Wild Light’, introduced as “the token slow one” that proved to be a slice of dark balladry performed effortlessly with wine in one hand, mic in the other – though inevitably building into guitar fuelled heights just as thunderous as those prior to it. Further standouts came from the indignant attitudes within ‘House Of Love’, climaxing in accapella full band harmonies worthy of the £7 ticket alone, and the tongue in cheek midst sneer of Faith Holgate with lyrics like “forgot to say Happy Birthday/I hope I didn’t spoil your party” in ‘Too Late’.

Hitting back at 2013’s ‘Girls Like Us’ LP towards the end of the show, the outfit dived into ‘Waiting For The End’, spurring on the fun with giant party poppers streaming over the crowd and the track still proving to be a bona fide hit, before their own take on Misfits’ ‘Hybrid Moments’ – a track that when reinvigorated by Holgate’s vocal fits somewhat surprisingly well up against the band’s new more frantic material. Closing the set with ‘Girls Like Us’ complete with band initiated dancing stage invasion and yet more party poppers, it was quite clear to see why PINS are stealing the hearts of a everyone whose paths they cross at the moment, and with their new album sounding somehow even better than the first, things seem only set to continue.